Good morning to you Future and Current PHDers! You are a world changer! Don’t tell yourself anything different.
During the dissertation phase, I felt like I was in a glass maze I saw the end over here so I went over here. It wasn’t there. Idiot. That’s not the way! Why would you think this is the way!? The end is that way I was told. So I went that way. Money money money. Student loan check. A Nother several thousand dollars for tuition check. Stupid! Everyone knows that is not the way. Faculty didn’t say that to me. I said that to me. So if you find yourself calling yourself very ugly names, stop it! You are not in a PhD program because you are stupid! Remember that!
Well 3rd year review approaching. I used to be a productive person. But now I just don’t know.
Do you find yourself doubting your abilities? Wondering oh my gosh what was I thinking?! I am not good enough to be Dr. Elmyra (or Dr. Elmer) Fudd!!! And, duh! everyone around me knows that and can see right through me laughing under their breath, shaking their head thinking she (he) will never make it. She (He) will quit/flunk out. She (he) is trying to be someone she (he) is not good enough to be!
Oh, ok! I am the only one who in PhD school who ever felt that way! Right? Please, don’t leave me out to dry!
My PhD program was all online. I truly believe that environment really festers (oops, Freudian slip, I meant fosters) that sense of feeling oh I am so stupid! I have been an online and classroom student alternately so speaking as a student and have taught online and face-to-face so had both sides of the computer/podium screen so I have creds (ha, not going to furnish on this blog cause I don’t haff to-nanynany-booboo!)
Now that I made it out the other end, please let me encourage any of you poor soles in the thick of it, especially if in the Horrors of ABD phase that may admittedly or secretly feel like I did, you really are where you are because you are qualified. You were hand-picked. Programs with the highest degree on the planet don’t just willy-nilly pick folks just cause they show a willingness to pay out the nose to be subjected to such EXTREEEME torture.
YOU CAN DO DIS!!!!
YOU WERE CHOSEN!!!!! Believe!
Did you see the movie Ever After?! Of course not. you are in PhD school. Well at the end, there is a song that has extremely scholarly lyrics. They are:
I BELIEVE I BELIEVE I BELIEVE I BELIEVE I BELIEVE I BELIEVE I BELIEVE I BELIEVE I BELIEVE I BELIEVE I BELIEVE I BELIEVE (ok then it does take a quick break and adds “in love” but now you interject the very PhD answer “in my ability to finish school including this ABD phase; I can do this cause I was hand-picked and would not be here if I couldn’t do it” cause you know no PhD response is as easy as “I believe in love”. Uh, duh, that doesn’t sound very philosophical, right?!
I BELIEVE I BELIEVE I BELIEVE I BELIEVE I BELIEVE I BELIEVE I BELIEVE I BELIEVE I BELIEVE I BELIEVE I BELIEVE I BELIEVE I BELIEVE I BELIEVE I BELIEVE I BELIEVE I BELIEVE I BELIEVE in that very long quote above. HeeHee.
Earlier on in my PhD, I developed a bad habit, though I didn’t know it at the time. As well as habitually googling, ‘reasons not to do a PhD’ (although I knew that was a bad idea from the outset), I also tried ‘advice for a PhD student’. Though seemingly harmless, asking the internet this question actually had pretty terrible consequences for a worrier like me.
Every blog post or web page I stumbled upon described, in minute detail, all of the trappings and pitfalls a supervisor, department head, administrative team, piece of lab equipment, software component or even partner could conceivably lay out for you to stumble upon throughout the duration of your studies. Reading these posts was, understandably, a terrifying experience. How on Earth could I insure myself against ALL of these perfectly feasible ordeals? Maybe I should try and delay my enrolment and…
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